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Local Dems endorse Abel for House seat
The 26th District Democrats announced they will recommend Port Orchard Mayor Kim Abel to take over Rep. Pat Lantzs seat in the state Legislature, Chair Susan Cruver said this week.
Abel shows that shes truly interested in whats going on, said Cruver, an Olalla resident, explaining that her group recently interviewed Abel and three other candidates before choosing one to endorse.
We try through any means possible to identify potential candidates, she said, adding that the group not only announces they are seeking candidates, but will approach people they feel are qualified. We want to make sure that everybody who wants to interview has that opportunity.
As for the other three interviewees, Cruver said former Port Orchard Councilmember Rita DiIenno was included in that group.
She added that DiIenno was not a candidate, but we asked her to interview and she did.
Cruver said she did not feel comfortable naming the other two interviewees before contacting them for their permission.
In choosing a candidate to endorse, Cruver said her group looks for someone who has an understanding of the district, which she described as a pretty diverse area that includes all of South Kitsap since in spans south from Bremerton to Gig Harbor.
Cruver said along with looking for someone with a good grasp of the issues that affect people in this area, her group also seeks a candidate who is prepared to campaign.
Our district is about as close to half Democrat and half Republican as possible about the swingiest as you can get, she said, explaining that to win, a candidate has to be willing to get out and talk to people.
Thats how you win elections, she said. We want to make sure a candidate has the time and resources, and knows what it takes to campaign.
In their endorsement of Abel, the 26th District Democrats said the breadth and depth of Kims experience will contribute greatly to her success as our new State Representative, noting that Abel served on the Kitsap Regional Coordinating Council, along with the board of commissioners for Kitsap Transit, the Kitsap County Health District, the Kitsap County Consolidated Housing Authority, and the Kitsap Department of Emergency Management Board and Kitsap CenCom.
She was also appointed to the Puget Sound Regional Council Executive Board, then represented the Kitsap cities on the Kitsap Economic Development Council, and continued her representation during the visioning and change of direction of the Kitsap Economic Development Alliance in 2007.
The groups Nominating Convention will be held May 6 at 7 p.m.. at the Givens Community Center, located at 1026 Sidney Avenue.